Charlotte dances, goes to Girl Scouts and attends school with a great group of girls. Often her “pesky little brother” is thrown into the mix during our comings and goings with carpools, birthday parties and after school and in school activities. He is also on hand for all the recitals and other big events in these girls’ lives. Some of the girls simply tolerate Jonathan. Others adore him and dote on him. He is especially fond of one of them. In fact, one sure fire way to ensure Jonathan cleans his room is to tell him that this particular girl is coming over – in about five minutes. His room will be spotless in about four minutes.
I am often taking pictures of this group of girls. (Some of the girls tolerate me and my endless picture taking. Some of them adore it. None of them, however, dote on me as they do my son – go figure! :-)) At any rate, there are endless pictures of the girls and often, there is a seemingly random picture of the girls with the “pesky little brother” in the shot. Most recent case in point: last Saturday night following the girls’ performance in the Nutcracker. As is our tradition, we head over to Savannah’s famous Leopold’s Ice Cream shop after the show. And is our tradition, the cameras are clicking. Check out this picture – a very common occurrence: Jonathan front and center with a chocolate ice cream goatee, as I’m trying to take a shot – of the girls – WITHOUT the “pesky little brother.”
Also on hand that night was a “pesky older brother, ” the older sibling of one of Charlotte’s gal pals, Lizzy. Michael, like Jonathan, is also thrown into the mix on occasion for Lizzy and Charlotte’s special events. Michael’s grandmother was also there on Saturday night, out of town from Ohio, to see her granddaughter in the Nutcracker. Apparently the next day, the grandmother, a former kindergarten teacher, started asking Michael and Lizzy about Jonathan. Michael’s mom emailed me to tell me about the exchange. It went something like this: “Michael was commenting on what a cool kid Jonathan is. My children’s last comment about him was about Down syndrome. What a positive result of having Jonathan in our school family. Meaning my kids (and I) don’t look at Jonathan through his disability but as a neat boy to have as a friend.”
Wow! Michael, Lizzy and your mom, Susan, thank you for making my day!